Asian stock markets have risen for a second
consecutive day on optimism that government rescue efforts will heal the
stricken global financial system. Japanese stocks soared by 14 percent. In
Australia, investors were encouraged by Prime Minister Kevin Rudd's plan to
spend billions of dollars to strengthen the economy. From Sydney, Phil Mercer
Japan lead the
gains in Asian markets Tuesday as the benchmark Nikkei 225 index surged by more
than 1,100 points, or 14 percent - a stunning reversal after plunging nearly 10
It was the Nikkei's biggest single-day gain in
The positive mood has been repeated across the region.
Stock prices in South
Korea, the Philippines and Indonesia jumped by more than six percent, and key
indexes in Australia and Hong Kong rallied more than three percent.
recovery in Australian stocks, which went into freefall at the end of last week,
followed a decision by the government to spend more than $7 billion to try to
stave off recession.
The funds will come from the budget surplus, which
has been amassed largely on the back of a mining boom that has seen vast
quantities of Australian minerals exported to China and India.
economists say the stimulus package may not be enough to prevent Australia
slipping into a recession after 17 years of uninterrupted growth.
nationwide address, Australian Prime Minister Kevin Rudd was optimistic about
the future, but said that immediate action was needed.
financial crisis has entered into a new, dangerous and damaging phase, one which
goes to the real economy, growth and jobs," said Mr. Rudd. "And that is why the
government has decided to act decisively and early on the question of this
economic security strategy for the future; an economic security strategy to help
underpin positive economic growth into the future and to provide practical
support for households."
The recovery of Asian stock markets followed a
surge in the Dow Jones Industrial Average, which gained more than 11 percent
Monday - its biggest one-day gain since 1933.
Investors were reacting to
efforts by the U.S. government to inject capital into banking system to
stimulate lending, which has dried up in the global credit meltdown.